Alsace-Lorraine to World War 1

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The significance of Alsace-Lorraine to World War 1, is as you can see, a huge factor. The fact that France was always determined to recapture the territory, it set a state of mind for revenge and fueled a sense of nationalism in the French citizens. In contrast to their rival, The French gave Alsace-Lorraine a much more central role in their propaganda efforts, ‘French officials wanted to make sure to generate support for one of the key French aims of the was the eventual return of Alsace-Lorraine to France,’ (World War I and Propaganda). This more positive attitude toward the Alsatians worked well with their message of promising to deliver freedom, equality and community, as opposed to German’s aim of disregard, outcast and forceful Germanization. Such propaganda on France’s end worked quite well, as the region of Alsace had long-standing ties to France.

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What ensued following these events, will be known as the straw that broke the camel’s back. In 1905, Kaiser Wilhelm II went to Tangier Morocco under the pretense of declaring support of the sultan wanting to liberate the Moroccan people and to promote their independence. This only made matters worse with Germany’s relationship with France and Britain, later on becoming known as the First Moroccan Crisis. Back in April 1904, there was an alliance formed between long-standing imperialist rivals Britain and France regarding expansion in North Africa. The terms set forth by the settlement was that Britain could have Egypt while France was free to expand into Morocco. Germany was subsequently excluded from these decisions and angered that their own influence and power in the world was being challenged. Although it was Germany’s attempt to drive a wedge between Britain and France, it only strengthened their bond and reinforced the power balance of the rival blocs. Completely dismissing the efforts of Bismarck to diffuse the strain between nations, Germany increasingly isolated itself from its allies. Not more than 3 years after the Second Moroccan Crisis in 1911, would all of these factors lead to the outbreak of World War I.

As capitalist-fueled imperialism and the rise of industrialism produced a new wave of colonization that lead to competition for resources, it eventually divided the world into rival powers. Granted, there were many other factors that played into the outbreak of war, the main long-term causations were undoubtedly social nationalism, expansionism, and alliance disputes. World war I was a war that shocked the world to its core and changed the nature of major European powers for many years to come. 

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Alsace-Lorraine To World War 1. (2022, Apr 18). Retrieved February 5, 2023 , from
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